Birth Name: Alexander Draper Wolff
Place of Birth: New York City, New York, U.S.
Date of Birth: November 1, 1997
*father – Ashkenazi Jewish
*mother – English, German, some Scottish, along with 1/256th Portuguese Azorean, and distant Welsh, Jersey/Channel Islander, and French
Alex Wolff is an American actor, drummer, guitarist, singer, songwriter, and director. He is a member of pop rock duo Nat and Alex Wolff, with his brother, actor, musician, and director Nat Wolff. His acting roles include the films The Sitter, A Birder’s Guide to Everything, Coming Through the Rye, My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2, Patriots Day, The House of Tomorrow, My Friend Dahmer, Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle, and its sequel, Jumanji: The Next Level; Hereditary, Dude, Stella’s Last Weekend, The Cat and the Moon, which he also wrote and directed; Castle in the Ground, Bad Education, Human Capital, Pig, Old, A Good Person, and Oppenheimer (2023); and the shows The Naked Brothers Band, also with his brother; and In Treatment.
He is the son of musician Michael Wolff and actress and director Polly Draper. His mother spearheaded The Naked Brothers Band franchise, and created and showran the television series of the same name. A picture of Alex’s parents can be seen here. His uncle is venture capitalist Tim Draper, and his cousin is television personality and venture capitalist Jesse Draper, who is Tim’s daughter.
Alex’s father is Jewish, of Russian Jewish, Polish Jewish, and German Jewish descent. Alex’s own upbringing has been described as being “culturally Jewish.”
Alex’s mother has a significant amount of English ancestry, as well as a grandmother who was of German descent, and some Scottish roots. Also, one of Alex’s maternal great-great-great-great-great-great-great-grandfathers, Antonio de Zocieur, was Portuguese, born on Terceira Island in the Azores. This makes Alex of one eighth German and 1/512th Portuguese descent. Alex’s mother also has very distant Welsh, Jersey Channel Islander, and French, ancestry. Through his mother, Alex is a descendant of Mayflower passenger Francis Cooke, and of Captain Joseph Weld (1599-1646), one of the founders of the prominent Boston Brahmin Weld family of Massachusetts. Among Joseph’s other descendants are Massachusetts Governor Bill Weld and actress Tuesday Weld.
Alex’s paternal grandfather was Marvin Lee Wolff (the son of Ben Ernest Wolff and Sadie Blieden). Marvin was born in Mississippi. Ben was born in Louisville, Kentucky, to Jewish parents from Russia. Sadie was born in Indiana, also to Russian Jewish parents, Abraham Marcus Blieden and Frances Annie Aron/Aronovitz.
Alex’s paternal grandmother was Lise Bertha Silverman (the daughter of Daniel N. “Dan” Silverman and Hermina M. Ochs). Lise was born in New Orleans. Daniel was also born in Louisiana, and was the son of Nathan Silverman, who was a Polish Jewish immigrant, and of Caroline Weyl, who was a German Jewish immigrant, and was herself the daughter of Seligman Weyl and Rosalie. Alex’s great-grandmother Hermina was also born in Louisiana, the daughter of Louis Ochs, whose parents were German Jews, and of Bertha Davis, whose parents were also Jewish emigrants, her father from Russia and her mother from Germany.
Alex’s maternal grandfather is William Henry Draper III (the son of William Henry Draper II and Katherine Louise Baum). Alex’s grandfather William was born in New York, and is a venture capitalist and a civic leader of the United Nations Development Programme. Alex’s great-grandfather William was a diplomat, army officer, and banker, and was the son of William Henry Draper and Mary Emma Carey. Katherine was the daughter of George Baum and Julia Cook; all of Katherine’s grandparents (Henry Baum, Katharina Emrich, Adam Cook, and Ann J. Scholtz) were German.
Alex’s maternal grandmother was Phyllis Culbertson (the daughter of William Howard Culbertson and Phyllis Barnard Nichols). Alex’s grandmother Phyllis was born in New York, and was an administrator for the Peace Corps. William was the son of Claude Lanier Culbertson and Mabel Virginia Cosgrave. Alex’s great-grandmother Phyllis Nichols was the daughter of Clifford Nichols and Albertine Louise Barnard.
Alex’s matrilineal line can be traced to Sarah “Sally” Canfield, who was born, c. 1789, in Litchfield, Connecticut.
Sources: Genealogy of Alex Wolff – https://www.geni.com
Alex’s paternal grandfather, Marvin Lee Wolff, on the 1930 U.S. Census – https://familysearch.org
Obituary of Alex’s paternal grandmother, Lise Bertha (Silverman) Wolff Blumenfeld – http://www.berkeleydailyplanet.com
Alex’s paternal great-grandfather, Daniel N. “Dan” Silverman, on the 1910 U.S. Census – https://familysearch.org
Alex’s maternal great-grandmother, Katherine Louise Baum, on the 1910 U.S. Census – https://familysearch.org
Obituary of Alex’s maternal grandmother, Phyllis (Culbertson) Draper – https://www.legacy.com